With the protest against the 30 per cent hike in freight rates gaining momentum, the Railways have rolled back the haulage charge for pig iron and sponge iron with effect from July 1.
Stressing that the hike rendered rail transport uneconomical, manufacturers and users of pig iron and sponge iron threatened to boycott the Railways, which increased the freight charges including container class rates for various categories ahead of the budget.
At this, container transport operators sent an SOS to railway authorities, demanding an immediate rollback as loss of this business would affect their operations in a very big way.Expressing happiness at the Railway’s announcement, Container Transport Association president R.C. Dubey said the clients would not shift to road transportation. He, however, pointed out that though the association had protested against the hike in freight of various commodities, the rollback was limited to pig iron and sponge iron.
According to the railway circular, the rollback will be in effect from July 1 to June 30, 2013.
Meanwhile, the Centre has decided to impose service tax on freight with effect from July 1.
Keywords: Railways freight rate hike